Lenten Journal – Day 20: Domestic violence

Solemnity of Saint Joseph, spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Matthew 1:24 – When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife

Last night I had a dream and when I woke up, I could still feel the tension in my body. I dreamed that I was in a small house. I was still young and living with my parents. The place looked like one of those poor areas where houses were so close to each other that you could hear your neighbors and they could look directly inside yours. Somehow I knew that my parents had invited our neighbor, a couple (husband and wife) living two houses away from us. They were coming over a bit later. I was standing inside a room that had a huge window. I could see the pavement outside; and the house across which was around 2 meters away. I could hear some fights from the house where the couple was living; screams, shouts and banging. I knew that it was a normal noise in the neighborhood. It was not something spectacular. The neighborhood was used to those kind of domestic turbulence. Then the husband went out of the house; a big man, wearing only pants without any shirt or anything on the upper  part of his torso. The wife went out as well after a minute. I could see that she obviously had been beaten and was crying. But she had to obey and to follow behind her husband. The husband passed my window. Our eyes met. I looked at him angrily. I wanted to do something. Then he asked me, “What are you looking at? do you have any problem with me?” He then took a piece of a cylinder metal and started to walk towards my window. I remember that I was angry and ready to fight; at the same time fearful of what would happen next. I remember that I called my father, so he could come in my room. Then I woke up.

Today, I’m offering my prayers and sacrifices for husbands/couples; that they may be more like Joseph. I pray as well for all battered wives/husbands or any member of a family that are suffering not only from physical abuse but also mental/emotional abuse. And may God forgive us if ever we have taken part to any violent or aggressive behavior at home. May God’s grace continue to renew us everyday, filled and empowered by the Holy Spirit through Jesus Christ.



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